International organizations

1. Defining IOs.
International organizations are social constructs created by people
in order to achieve a target. These organizations may have different
goals and be under various systems of law. The most important is
that they are created between states (exactly by authorized
representatives of states). Some IOs can be members of another IOs
or founding members. Not all the bodies created by states are IOs.
Some IOs need special treaties in order to operate. Most of the IOs
are also created on the basis of treaties. Some IOs are created by
legal acts or existing organizations. E.g. UN General Assembly
created by resolution UNIDO and UNICEF. So creation of IO is an
intentional act. Another point that makes IOs different from other
forms of international cooperation is that IOs have at least one
organ that can have different opinion that the opinion of its member
IOs are the most typical forms of interstate cooperation.
IO is a formal, continuous structure established by
agreement between members from two or more sovereign
states with the aim of pursuing the common interest of the
Classification of IOs
By function
IOs can be classified on the basis of their functions (e.g. economy,
peace and security, military alliance, nutrition, public health,
By membership
Some organizations are open for all the states and invite all of them
to join. However, some organizations have limited membership. For
example, regional organization will include countries from that
region only. Another example is OPEC, here the geography is not
important but the connection among state is economic.
Political vs functional
Some functions may be mistaken with political reasons. E.g. IO for
regulation of telecommunications does not include political reasons.
If by politics we mean issues of peace and security than only the UN
is a universal political organization.
Intergovernmental or supranational

The organization must meet regularly. geography. the maximum break between meetings can be 10 years. Organization must be permanent ii. Formal structure is provided by a constitution and makes rules for electing bodies. IO is a representative consultative organ v. ii. politics. So the organization in this way do not rise above its members but stays between the members and is intergovernmental. fields of activity. Bennett’s IOs features: i. Membership is voluntary iii. So EC actually stands above its member-states and because of that it is supranational. The purpose must be totally international and must include at least 3 states. Anthony Judge’s eight criteria of international organization: i. voting must be independent of any national group. Membership must be individual or collective. members must have full voting right. allocation of headquarters or nomenclature. iii. IO has permanent office and administration . IO must have at least two members and must be created by a formal agreement between the governments of states. ii. All activities must be recorded as evidence. The product of these decision is EC law. officers and operations. Wallace and Singer’s three criteria: i. Members who are in other organization must show that they are independent. Officers can’t be of the same nationality for longer than a specific period. vi. So a supranational organization decision are taken by majority vote. ideology. The organization must have a fixed headquarter and an office that works all the time. There is an official document that presents goals. This organization to be international cannot look at things like size. structure and method of operation iv. Most of EC law has force as legal order in member states. vii. States must make financial contributions (must give money to the budget of the organization). iv. v. which is stronger than domestic law. In contrast. iii. These rules do not enter domestic legal orders directly. decisions in international organizations take decisions by unanimity (all states vote the same) or consensus. viii.The only supranational organization in the EC. Definition of a supranational organization will be created on the basis of the EC.

But they can have different rights and obligations under this law. But it is different in non-member states.Most of other authors present similar features. Legal personality under domestic and international law. . International legal personality The position of IOs in member states in regulated by treaties. 2. There are two theories here: “will theory” (“subjective theory”) and “objective theory” of personality. The legal position of IOs. There are three important factors to see what right and obligations a state has. IOs are generally subject to international law. However. Legal personality under domestic law Every domestic legal system is different and can have different requirements. the right to send and receive legations and the right to bring and receive international claims. Structure The organization must have a formal structure set up on the basis of a treaty or constituent document. International personality of IOs. It must be checked if the state has: the right to enter into international agreements. there are three features that appear in every definition: membership. “Objective theory” says that when an organization is created it must follow the international law and it this way it gets the international legal personality. Aim There is one target for all the member states and they all work to achieve it. membership is not limited. aim and structure. In “will theory” the will of founders of the organization decides on the organization’s legal personality. Membership Minimum 2-3 states. Because of this constituent treaties of organization include provisions about the personality of the organization under the domestic law of its member states. But in practice this theory without recognition by third parties is invalid. IOs have the right to make treaties.

For example. More and more organizations were created as the public international law was changing into law of cooperation. it set new style for diplomacy. Most of UNO institutions were similar to LN. The rise of IOs History of the rise of IOs starts in 1919 at the Versailles Peace Conference. The rules about the constituent documents of international organizations are described in 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties. economics. The rise of modern IOs With time it became clear that international cooperation is required and possible. Growing number of states allowed large number of international organization and different purposes of them.g. a) IOs roles and functions There are three major roles instrument. 4. But the League of Nations with its system did not prevent the WWII. But they are not usual treaties because they set up international organizations and because of that they have a special status. of international organizations: . Before that time there were no interstate organization because there was no stable system of sovereign states in Europe. The experience of WWII was important for creation of the United Nations Organization. Influence of Cold War forced the creation of the Pact of Brussels and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Other areas are e. transportation. a) Origins of formal international cooperation. b) Setting up an international organization: IOs’ statutes The constituent documents of international organizations are mostly treaties. It worked out many systems not only to deal with politics but also with social and economic issues. economy and society. There were and are four major types of global interaction: communication. They established the League of Nations. finance and travel. However. all over the world. security. Organizations were appearing everywhere. There the state representatives wanted to create a new organization that would deal with the problems of peace. health. arena and actor. The League of Nations introduced many changes in the way of international cooperation.3. The most obvious area is transport and communication. There are four cases here: the facility of making reservations to constituent documents. WWII and the post-war time influenced the character of work of the UN since 1945. The number of member states increased. the law of international organizations can depart from the general law of treaties. revision of constituent documents. termination of such documents and interpretation of constituent documents. and agriculture.

Recruitment IOs can have an important function in the recruitment participants in the international political system. It helps to allocate resources and define values. argue. actor – are not mutually exclusive. the UN plays each role in international relations. discussion and negotiations. the UN in its first years was an instrument of US diplomacy.Instrument Here IO is an instrument used by its members to achieve a target. They help to set up norms. In this case. The three roles that international organizations can perform – instrument. cooperate or disagree. But to be an instrument. Norms IOs are very important as instrument. It means that it acts independently and it is not influenced even by the individual interest of its members. This is the case with IGOs (members are sovereign states with power to limit independent action by international organizations). IOs have helped to establish norms of behavior. in the field of economic affairs. of Socialization Socialization is performed within the nation-state by a number of agencies. Arena The second role is an arena or a forum where actions take place. Allocation is done by agreement. forums and actors to the normative activities of the international political system. Functions of international organizations Articulation and aggregation IOs can perform tasks of interest articulation and aggregation in international affairs. For example. the IO doesn’t have to serve the interest of each member. Actor IO can be an independent actor. the organizations provide a meeting place for members to come together and discuss. Arena is neutral. For example. arena. For example. Its target is to make the feeling of individual loyalty to the . IOs bring together members with one target and help them to present it and achieve it together.

For example.system stronger and crate acceptance of the values of that system and its institutions. For example. partial membership (a state is a full . Organizations have also different levels of membership. associate membership (limited membership for some time leading to full membership later). membership in UN is open to all the peace-loving states. e. rule application is left mainly to sovereign states. which accept conditions presented in the Charter and are ready to act according to the Charter requirements. under what conditions and by which procedure. Agents of socialization can be. Internationally.g. churches or schools. banking. E.g. Information IOs provide information and communicate at the international level. Rule application In the international political system. the process of rule adjudication lacks the extensive institutions. Operations International organizations undertake a number of operational functions. b) Membership in IOs Usually the treaties of IOs control who can join the organization. membership in the World Bank is open only for members of the International Monetary Fund. However. IOs have principles to make rules. every organization can have special rules here.g. members have the option to leave organization and not act with the rules. IOs take on aspects of applying generally accepted rules. They produce a lot of important information and statistical data. providing aid. Multinational corporations help here a lot. The most important institutions here are for example the International Court of Justice. Rule making The function of rule making in international organizations is more obvious than that of socialization.: the rules are formulated by agreement of all or most of the member states. E. the process of socialization takes two levels. international organization has no direct relationship with private citizens of the member states.g. Agents of socializations work across borders and contact individuals and groups. dealing with goods and running technical services. Rule adjudication At the international level. In some cases connection between various organizations is so close that membership in one is impossible without membership in the other. e. The international system has no central formal rule-making institution such as a government or parliament.

member of some organs without being a member of the parent organization) and affiliate membership. cancelling) is another important issue. Another category of acts are these which don’t create law but influence the behavior of the organization: recommendations. Observers usually cannot vote. Organizations can also give some states the status of an observer. Law making by international organization is controlled by the constituent documents of international organizations. There are also some instruments of more administrative nature like decisions in EC law. Various types of legal instruments are divided on the basis of their purpose. There are also acts of a ‘household nature’. The legal nature of instruments and they way they are created is described by the constituent treaty. IOs must be able to adopt and create legal instruments. Some organizations do not use this because this is some kind of a punishment. EC INSTRUMENTS . they must basically start to apply to be a member of an organization from the beginning. lay down rules of general application. The power of organizations sets the rules as for acts that can be adopted. b) Decision making in IOs. the theory of delegation and the theory of legislation. codes of conduct or generally non-binding resolutions. They covers acts related to budget or election of officials in the organization. but sometimes they have to go through many procedures. They will decide on legal acts and decision-making procedures. IOs officers. Termination of membership (finishing. There are for example EC regulations that bind all the memberstates. Members have also the rights to withdraw by themselves. a) IOs’ international structure: organs. The legal character of IOs official acts. Issue of representation is connected to membership. There are three theories of law making in international organizations: the treaty analogy. Some instruments can make law. When states change. There are also other non-classified types of instruments like declarations. Sometimes (like the UN) they just suspend the rights of a member until the member corrects his actions. they fall apart or create new countries. The treaties do not deal with this issue but there are rules of procedure of the IO which say who and how should represent the member state. 5. It takes place occasionally that an organization decides to remove some members. The rights of observers are not usually full rights. Sometimes they are automatically accepted. declarations.

directives come with deadlines Decisions – administrative acts. member states are free to choose how they want to achieve this result.Regulations – law-making. directly applicable. CASE STUDIES 8. it is superior to domestic law of member states Directives – binding as far as the result is concerned. IOs may also adopt conventions. all the member state must implement it. 6. they are binding but they don’t create abstract and generally applicable rules of behavior. 7. binding. . International non-governmental organizations. Financing and budgets of IOs.